Bible Verses About Self Control

In everyday life, many things can happen. You feel a myriad of different emotions, you think a thousand thoughts, and you behave in many different ways. Some circumstances make you happy, others make you sad, and there are times that make you angry and violent.

When you are faced with such negative emotions that drive your behavior, the Bible teaches you to practice self-control.

Self-control allows you to resist temptation, and therefore, resist sin. With self-control, you are able to live life with righteousness, and in the path that God wants you to lead.

What is Self-Control?

Self-control is defined as exercising restraint over your thoughts, emotions, and actions. It is restraint over your impulses and desires. Proverbs 14:29 states that whoever is patient has great understanding but one who is quick-tempered shows folly. Patience allows you to understand situations better, and not act based on face value. A person may be rude to you, but upon assessing the situation, his behavior could just be how he normally acts and that you shouldn’t take it personally.

The Bible teaches us that if we do not have self-control. then we will be slaves to what controls us.

Lack of Self-Control and Its Consequences

The Bible has shown us many stories of lack of self-control and their devastating and fatal consequences. In the story of the Creation, Adam allowed emotion to reign over him rather than reason, and for that, according to Romans 5:12, sin entered into the world and death through sin.

The first murder recorded in the Bible was due to a lack of self-control over Cain, who murdered his brother Abel. And the wife of Lot lost her life because she could not resist the temptation to look back.

Many of the world’s troubles are caused by a lack of self-control. Adultery, theft, and crimes to humanity are caused by men and women who do not have self-discipline over their thoughts and actions. They do not see and consider the consequences of their actions, but rather, they are obeying their love of self-pleasure and temptations of the flesh. Men do not practice self-control because they are lovers of pleasure, rather than lovers of God, as stated in 2 Timothy 3:1-5.

Self-Control and Anger

Proverbs 29:11 says that fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm. In Matthew 5:22, it says: “But I promise you that if you are angry with someone, you will have to stand trial. If you call someone a fool. you will be taken to court. If you call someone worthless, then you will be in danger of the fires of hell.”

All our actions have consequences and when we act out of anger, no good will come out of it. When we act out of anger and pettiness, only negativity will come to our lives. It says so in Psalm 37:8, where it states that “Don’t give in to worry or anger, as it only leads to hell.”

Self-control and anger must come hand in hand. It is normal to feel angry or hold a grudge against someone who we deem as having done wrong to us. But, you shouldn’t give in to your emotions and impulses because it goes against God’s wishes. God tells us to let go of anger and grudges because it leads us to sin.

In Proverbs 29:22, it says that a person who is quick-tempered causes a lot of quarreling and trouble.

The Bible not only teaches us to be patient with others, and to have self-discipline, but it also shows us many examples of the devastating consequences of the lack of self-control. Whenever we are tempted to give in to the temptations of the flesh and mind, we must remember what God teaches us in the Bible, so we are able to take a step back, evaluate our thoughts and emotions, and regulate our actions that obey the Word of God.

Bible Verses About Self Control

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

2 Corinthians 12:9 New International Version (NIV)

“I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but I will not be mastered by anything.

1 Corinthians 6:12 New International Version (NIV)

24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.

1 Corinthians 9:24-25 New International Version (NIV)

19 My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.

James 1:19-20 New International Version (NIV)

Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.

Romans 12:1 New International Version (NIV)

No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.

1 Corinthians 10:13 New International Version (NIV)

For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.

2 Timothy 1:7 New International Version (NIV)

For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

2 Peter 1:5-8 New International Version (NIV)

11 For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. 12 It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age,

Titus 2:11-12 New International Version (NIV)

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.

2 Timothy 3:1-5 New International Version (NIV)

Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money.

1 Timothy 3:2-3 New International Version (NIV)

Do not deprive each other except perhaps by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.

1 Corinthians 7:5 New International Version (NIV)

27 It is not good to eat too much honey,
    nor is it honorable to search out matters that are too deep.

28 Like a city whose walls are broken through
    is a person who lacks self-control.

Proverbs 25:27-28 New International Version (NIV)

For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.

Romans 7:18 New International Version (NIV)

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Galatians 5:22-23 New International Version (NIV)

Scriptures on Self Control

Fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm in the end.

Proverbs 29:11 New International Version (NIV)

Set a guard over my mouth, Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips.

Do not let my heart be drawn to what is evil so that I take part in wicked deeds along with those who are evildoers; do not let me eat their delicacies.

Psalm 141:3-4 New International Version (NIV)

He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.

Isaiah 53:7 New International Version (NIV)

The lips of fools bring them strife,
    and their mouths invite a beating.

The mouths of fools are their undoing,
    and their lips are a snare to their very lives.

Proverbs 18:6-7 New International Version (NIV)

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.

10 And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.

1 Peter 5:8-10 New International Version (NIV)

27 “But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

Luke 6:27-31 New International Version (NIV)

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